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Playing to Beat the Blues: Message and Medium Features in Promoting Engagement with a Video Game Health Application

Presenter: Subuhi Khan

Oct 12, 2017
from 12:00 PM to 01:00 PM

Kerr Hall 386

Presenters:  Subuhi Khan

Title: Playing to Beat the Blues: Message and Medium Features in Promoting Engagement with a Video Game Health Application

Abstract: In two separate studies, the authors explored the effect of specific message and channel features on engagement with a self-help depression health app.

In Study 1 participants with mild depression read messages assigning agency to depression or to humans and depicting depression as external or internal before accessing a video game designed for handling depression symptoms. Assigning internal causality language led to greater game usability and higher intentions of using the games. Game performance and time spent playing the games, was higher for external causality language.

In Study 2, causality was assigned to internal-chemical imbalance, internal-attitudinal and external-environmental factors to explore the influence of causality in more granular detail. Further, participants saw the messages on two different screen sizes to account for channel effects. Self-report outcomes replicated findings from study 1 & large screen size influenced behavioral outcomes.

Overall, findings from these two studies demonstrate the effectiveness of causality attribution in message prompts to promote video game experience for mental health apps and explicate the role of screen size in influencing message processing.

 

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